Two years ago, Stephanie Brubaker and her family moved into this apartment in Seattle’s Magnolia neighborhood. Since light is a premium in Seattle, Stephanie says they were determined to create a bright, open space as a way of helping her family cope with the long, dark days. Their first project was to paint the olive green walls a warm beige, complementing the red brick fireplace. A couple prominent light fixtures were changed, which added a much-desired modern feel. In a rental, there are only so many changes that can be made, but thankfully these small changes have had a huge impact on the space without breaking the bank. Four children keep Stephanie and her husband very busy, but she manages to carve out time for many creative pursuits, including her pie box business; her blog, Stephmodo; and last but not least, their renovation of a medieval French cottage, which we’ve featured right here on Design*Sponge. Thank you, Stephanie and family! — Shannon
Image above: We opted for keeping the large windows sans treatments to help with opening up the dining room. You sacrifice a little bit of privacy by going this route, but the addition of natural light was totally worth it. The mid-century Danish modern table was a lucky Craigslist find for $130, and the chairs are by Tolix. Next to my children, they are my favorite things :) The vintage Wassily chairs are also a Craigslist find; I purchased the set of two for $100. In the winter, I throw sheepskins from Ikea over them to offset the coolness of the metal.
Image above: Like many of you, I feel very inspired by nature, so placing my desk directly next to the window seemed apropos. During quiet moments (usually after the kids are in bed), I’ll slide my laptop onto the desk and write away. The mid-century desk and lamp were both purchased on Craigslist, although the lamp can be purchased at Macy’s. Art is by Lauren Adams. The terrarium is something I made.
See more of Stephanie’s Seattle home after the jump . . .
Image above: I appreciate how transparent furnishings open up small spaces like this one. The console is from CB2, but I purchased it on Craigslist (as you can see, I am really putting my minivan to good use schlepping all this furniture around!). Photograph of Paris is by photographer Shannon McCullough-Wight.
Image above: My motto for living with kids is to put everything precious 4+ feet off the ground (so far so good!). Collecting art doesn’t have to be an expensive pursuit either — this I have learned. Many artists are either willing to trade or offer a very reasonable price if they are just getting started in their careers. Paintings by Chad Wys, Paul Ferney, Katherine Sandoz, Kelly Neidig and an unknown street artist in Florence.
Image above: After painting the kitchen, I added minimal stainless steel shelves to display cookbooks and recovered the benches in an Amy Butler print. Clock, Conran Shop; shelves, Pottery Barn; table, Lexington Modern
Image above: If you struggle to keep your plants alive, try air plants. They are pretty tough to kill! This one has lasted a very long time. Ikat fabric is Khanjali Glacier by Robert Allen.
Image above: In a previous life, I used our bedroom as a dumping ground. Now, I try to make it more of a sanctuary with just a few well-loved furnishings. Headboard by Pottery Barn (but purchased on C-list); pillow by Caitlin Wilson Textiles; nightstands by Target; task lamps by PBTeen on eBay; painting by Katherine Sandoz.
Image above: My son’s nursery is one of my favorite rooms. I love sitting in this chair while holding him, reading to him, feeding him, etc. Drawing by Dan Richards; chair by Ikea; rug by Overstock; shades by JCPenney; Magino stool/side table.
Image above: This time around, I opted for a simpler, more sophisticated nursery for my youngest son. The dresser/changing table on its own is pretty generic, so I changed out the knobs (Anthropologie) and hung a few vintage egg prints my husband gifted me a few years ago.